Snow at Six Little Acres

It rarely snows in Georgia. Well, I mean, we get flurries sometimes and we get black ice too often, but an accumulation of snow? Rare.

Super rare.

So when the big fat flakes started falling yesterday and the grandLittle Phoebe Jo proclaimed she would make a snowman, I was hoping she would not be disappointed. After all, the weatherGuessers said we only had a 20% chance.

And it is Georgia, y’all.

We got about four inches of snow and it was just perfect for our first winter at SLA. No power outage, no limbs down, no worries about getting to work this time (we are retired) and no problems at all.

One might say we deserved a perfect day after the baby cancer-home renovation-living in a camper year and a half we have had.

I might agree. Ok, I totally agree.

Anyway, here are some beautiful shots of a few of the Six Acres. Most taken by my daughter (she took a stroll through the woods) and some taken by me.

The first picture show the chicken tractor in the foreground. There are chickens all snuggled up in there. They are so happy they left us some eggs.

Thanks for stopping by and God bless.

Kathy Bo

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Another milestone at Six Little Acres

Considering what our family has been through in the days since Baby Wren was diagnosed with neuroblastoma, November 7, 2017 seemed so far away.

That was the date Ninja Man would retire.

Well, November 7, 2017 came. In between the day of the news (February 15, 2016) and what will now be forever known as Retirement Tuesday, Ninja Man and I have had a difficult path to navigate. In order to help our daughter and her sweet family, we rented our home out so we could afford to build near her at Six Little Acres without debt.

During that time there were too many trips back and forth to count.

It was also during that time we moved from the house to our 5th wheel RV. It was our initial plan when we bought it but we never planned to “need” to live there.

And during that time we renovated what has become home to all of us. Daughter and family are living here with us for now, making us a family of six.

While the “no debt” thing didn’t work out (we had to borrow some funds to get as far as we are), this place, y’all, is exactly what the doctor ordered. Especially for a family who is on the mend from their most difficult 21 months (and counting).

But on November 7, this guy drove up to the RV wearing one of two shirts I made for him to commemorate the big day.

Not being needed back at SLA right away, we stayed the week at camp, seeing friends and doing stuff campers do. Yes, there was food, bonfires, laughter and tears (me).

We headed home the Sunday after Retirement Tuesday. Daughter and family were so excited to see us and even celebrated Ninja Man’s big day with balloons and a banner. I LOVE festive decorations and this made me decide to have a banner of some sort on the porch year round. What? Yep. We are free from our former home’s HOA and I can make one out of anything I want so I’m gonna. By the way, our little princess isn’t in this photo but her mommy, daddy and sweet sister is.

We rested up Sunday and Monday for, well, we had absolutely no schedule whatsoever, so basically we rested up just because we could. For the first time in AGES. No alarms to set. No trips to drive. It’s been a very, very long and stressful 21 months to get to this point.

On Tuesday, this guy (yeah, he loves his shirt) was collecting branches for the fire pit we have yet to build. We are currently using just what we have, but with plans to have a pretty cool one later. One of those fires are ok to roast marshmallows on (grandLittle bait) and the other is we-have-no-clue-what-was-in-that-barrel-so-Heaven-knows-we-aint-cooking-over-it.

There was one little princess who was so excited to see her Poppa Bo. All of our grandLittles love this man so much. It just melts my heart to see them snuggle up to him.

So, after many, many difficult months and thinking it would never happen, we finally left this place where we have made lifelong friends.And this is also the first time we haven’t had to store BoTown, our RV.

I love this door. I love this wreath. I love Six Little Acres.

It’s good, y’all. Really good.

Thanks for stopping by, and God bless.

Kathy Bo

The bed

Ninja Man and I have purchased a few beds in our 41 years of marriage. While none of them were bought with much enthusiasm (sadly, a bed is a necessity, much like a new toilet seat) I have to say I couldn’t wait for this last one to arrive.

So, here’s the thing. In 41 years we have aged as well as expanded. Yeah. That queen sized bed was replaced with a king over 10 years ago.

In that time, Ninja developed a kicking thing and I developed a menopause thing that, combined, was awful. And by “awful”, I mean absolutely hellacious. I spent many, many nights on the sofa and many irritable days after little sleep due to our combined kicking/menopause syndrome.

When we bought our RV, it came with a king bed that is on a wooden platform. This became a solution- BUT what I found for Six Little Acres is DA BOMB!

It’s two twin beds on a platform.

Oh yes it is.

What’s a platform bed? Well, here’s the video we found and it has storage underneath! Check it out here.

First, we bought only one because I was here by myself for several weeks. It comes in a box, all rolled up in a bundle with the air sucked out. It was pretty cool unwrapping it. The price for two of these was SO much less than any queen or king mattress we’ve ever bought.

I’m not compensated for this- just wanted to share because it’s such a great solution for us.

Now- I have no idea how long these things will last but so far, so good.

And while I’m not ready to do a home tour since we are still unpacking, this is how the bed looks now. I know the pillows are not properly plumped for the blog world, but hey, it is what it is. I still have a room FULL of boxes to unpack. I get a pass, right? Hard to tell it’s not one mattress.

Unless you have a kicker or menopausal crazy lady keeping you awake.

He can kick and I can toss and turn. We are sleeping like a dog in the sun. I know that for sure because here’s my dog. Almost asleep. In the sun.

Oh and here he is in between the mattresses. He likes it there.

While we DO have to push the mattresses back together each morning, we are working on a way to keep them as “one”- meanwhile it’s a good solution for Six Little Acres.

And now I’m gonna take a nap.

Thanks for stopping by and check out Six Little Acres on Facebook for extra content!

Also please keep Baby Wren in your prayers. She’s on a new cancer therapy and we need this one to be “the cure”.

God bless.

Kathy Bo

To do lists

So we are now living life at Six Little Acres.  There are still many things to unpack and I’m slowly but surely making my way through the boxes.

Sometimes it’s like Christmas! I’m seeing things we “thought” were going to be stored for only three months, but glory be, it took a stinkin’ year and two months to finally get out of those storage units.

We’ve had only a few casualties; some china, a couple of items the movers thought they deserved (small stuff, God has that so we don’t have to pursue it), and Ninja Man’s shoulder. Yep, two slight tears in his rotator cuff. I asked him what happened. This is how it went:

Me: What in the world? Are you ok? Does it hurt? How did it happen?

Ninja Man: I don’t know.

Me: (We have been married nearly 41 years so I kinda know which question he chose to answer.) You don’t know how it happened? Were you with your shoulder all day? Did you loan it out? Are you secretly trying to do some sort of one-armed extreme sport?

Ninja Man: I don’t know.

Me: (see above part about 41 years)

Well, after several weeks of his wincing in pain, we went to the doc and it is determined that he will live. He got two shots, one where the sun don’t shine and another straight to the shoulder. I held his hand and gently reminded him that I delivered BOTH of his babies naturally. It’s the best I could do under the circumstances and it made the doctor laugh so it was sooo worth it.

Anyway, back to the subject at hand.

Spoiler alert: Having no money made me a list maker long ago when our kids were little, our mortgage was huge, and we were depressed when we were broke and irresponsible when we weren’t.

My lists went like the one I’m pasting in here. Stuff we can do that takes NO money and stuff we can do when we have a little extra. If any of you are IRS agents, I promise not to get anything until y’all are happy and friends with us again.

This will hang in the message area of the kitchen. What’s a message area? A blank wall for now but I’m going to make a sweet little something to hold lists such as this one.

By the way, the “no cost” list includes several things we already have like paint and stuff. It also includes elbow grease, as momma used to say, which means to get off one’s lazy fanny and work.

Things to do at Six Little Acres

No Cost

Outside:

Clean under carports

Clean up yard

Pick up branches

Clear spiderwebs

Touch up and paint porches

Put rug down on front porch

Fill holes in yard

Inside:

Master bath:

Add lights

Fix drawers

Touch up paint

Hang my makeup mirror

Adjust faucets

Studio bath:

Décor

Fix TP holder

Adjust faucets

Living room:

Repair and repaint post

Touch up paint

Décor

Make scripture for wall (Silhouette / vinyl)

Fix barn door

Kitchen:

Make rolling island

Make vinyl sign for chalkboard

Need funds:  

Outside:

$$     Paint carport roofs

$$     Buy or repair weed eater

$$     Install stepping stones or walkway to cars

$$     Make sitting area on hill

$$     Make firepit

$$     Get tree guy to see diseased trees

$$$   Remote for gate

$$$   Hire bobcat guy

$$$$ Build new porch on side of house

$$$$ Install fencing

$$$$ Install gutters

Inside:

$       Cordless phone with extra base

$$$   Rods and curtains in living room

$$$   Kitchen pantry

I hope this encourages someone to see parts of your own picture, not the whole overwhelming enchilada. Yesterday I unpacked our bedroom and organized the closet and dresser. It made all the difference in the world and I have to say I woke up happy for the first time in a long time. Cost was zero and momma would be proud.

Y’all be blessed, and please keep praying for the Six Little Acres folks. Baby Wren and her mommy (my daughter) are heading to Philadelphia soon for further treatment and we need that neuroblastoma to be gone.

Thanks for stopping by,

Kathy Bo

Moving Day

Y’all.

Our stuff is finally here.

Here at Six Little Acres.

Oh yes it is. And we, (the Ninja Man and moi) are exhausted beyond imagination.

Here’s what:

We rented a U-Haul and – through U-Haul- we hired two movers. Y’all remember how I’ve mentioned how blessed we are? Well, those two movers turned into three, and the four hours we paid for were finished in three!

That’s a big deal since Ninja Man had worked a full day and needed to go to bed. It’s just a piece of gravel in a mountain of major challenges we have faced.

None of this has been easy, y’all. None of it.

Let’s recap since February 2016. The 15th, to be exact was when Baby Wren was diagnosed with neuroblastoma in her neck. That is the day I will never forget. Baby cancer will do that to you. Looking back, it’s absolutely a devastating event that forever altered our lives. But it is also absolutely the time we have seen more blessings than we have ever witnessed.

With this news, there was not even a doubt that I would help our daughter and her husband with Wren and big sis Phoebe.

We moved away from our beautiful Savannah home, renting it out because it’s too soon in the mortgage to sell. We knew the expenses we would incur would be substantial. We own an RV and we moved into it.

We spent a full year renovating Six Little Acres with horrid contractors. I was in charge of the whole project and had to navigate it from a distance from either Savannah or the children’s hospital. All this while living in the RV near Savannah and me driving to Atlanta every 21 days for 13 rounds of baby chemo.

Our plan was to accomplish this place with no debt. We didn’t make that goal. We had to go into debt and now we will pay that as we go.

We finally finished this build/remodel in late May. I moved in and lived as sparsely as I’ve ever lived. Paper plates. No dresser for my clothes (I’ve successfully used cardboard boxes). Very few chairs, a borrowed pot and pan, no toaster, no washer or dryer and no TV. Everything we owned was in storage and Ninja would bring as much as he could every time he came. Im 58 years old. Let me just say that I am completely over hauling laundry to a laundromat either near SLA or at the campground. Over it, y’all.

We have been married nearly 41 years. Besides the washer and dryer, we have a good bit of stuff even though I pared it down a lot before we moved. Check this out: knowing how I needed furnishings and necessities, Ninja Man tirelessly loaded his truck after working 10 hour days (he had help only once) and drove the 3 1/2 hours from Savannah to our new home. He did this nearly every Friday for over four months.

He’s 64. There were bookcases and heavy boxes.

It’s a lot, y’all.

Fast forward to tonight. I can’t describe how tired we are. I’m too tired to cry. Too tired to put on my PJs. So I won’t do either.

Ninja Man and I left the RV (I was there to get some things done in Savannah) about 9:30 this morning. Instead of sleeping, I’d spent several hours being anxious about the SneakMobile being towed. Oh, I didn’t want to. I didn’t even expect to. It’s just a byproduct of being the sweet and loving control freak that I am.

Anyway, he drove the 26′ truck with The SneakMobile in tow. I drove his huge pickup truck.

Being the control freak that I am, I was surprised that once we were on the road, I really wasn’t worried at all. The SneakMobile is obedient, and followed along as if it we do this all the time.

Here we are challenging another U-Hauler to a duel.

Don’t worry, I never looked at my phone to take this picture. Seriously. It’s just a rare talent that I discovered shortly after the invention of picture-taking-phones.

Four hours later (only 30 extra minutes from our usual time) we were turning in at Six Little Acres.

Can I just tell y’all how big this is? Huge. Huge, y’all.

And that 26′ truck was filled, as momma would say, “to the gills.”

Having spent so much already, I put a call out on Facebook for help. Even though the offer was for pizza-compensation, we had folks eager to come at this crucial time.

Crucial because:

Both Ninja and I have issues with our right shoulders. Mine due to a hard fall on concrete, his a mystery injury. I asked him if he was with his shoulder at the time it was injured, he assured me he was. We have no clue what happened but he will get an MRI next week.

And can I just say that I saw my X-ray and I’m downright skinny up under all this fluff. Skinny bones. Yep. That’s me.

Anyway, here are a few pictures of the “during”. I will start on boxes tomorrow, right after I sleep until somebody makes me drag my drivin-all-over-the-dang-place-paper-plate-using-laundromat-hanging-out-whiney butt out of the bed.

And not a moment sooner.

Thanks for stopping by, and thank you all who have been praying for Baby Wren. Keep it up please, she has a ways to go yet.

God bless,

Kathy Bo.

An uninvited guest named Irma

We are southwest of Atlanta. We watched the news of Hurricane Irma with great interest, as we have friends and family in Florida and Savannah. We also still own a home in Savannah and so far it fared well.

Being southwest of Atlanta, we figured we’d have nothing more than rain.

We were wrong.

That danged old storm just found her way into places no one expected. And though we had only wind and rain, Six Little Acres was no exception to Irma’s SE trek.

There was rain, lots of it. It was the kind of cold rain that the pups refused to go outside.

All weekend.

We finally devised a plan that meant leading them out and letting them go in the carport. The carport is a metal roof thing with dirt as a floor, so it was perfect for pups “on the go”. This single thing was probably the best plan all weekend.

We had wind that twisted the treetops in a weird and creepy way. That wind got up to a guesstimate of about 40 mph and spread that cold rain with it.

We were ready for a power outage. We had hurricane snacks as well as bottled water, sandwich fixings, canned goods and chips.

Ninja Man and the FSIL filled every gas tank we had just in case we needed the generator.

The grandLittles were stir crazy after a few short hours and needed some chicken-chasin’ outdoors. But as the rain and winds continued, we all just did our best to entertain them.

Here’s a great illustration of Ninja Man, favorite daughter (ok, she’s our only daughter) and yours truly, coping with the storm.

I know. It’s hard to muster up any sympathy. Except for a flicker or two, we never lost power.

Please keep praying for those who were hit hard during this storm as well as Harvey. They may never regain their lives and livelihoods. Having once lost all our possessions in a fire, it breaks my heart to see the devastation reported from these storms across the Caribbean, Atlantic and the Gulf.

Prayers also please for Baby Wren and favorite daughter as they travel to Pennsylvania for more treatment. We are so blessed that they CAN travel. That there IS medicine. That we ARE able to have treatment for our Little. We are blessed beyond imagination.

Thank you for stopping by, and God bless each of you.

Kathy Bo

Sleep is overrated

It’s 3:45 in the morning and I can’t sleep.

Most of the time the reason I can’t sleep is because my mind is overcome with concern over our grandLittle Wren’s illness, other family needs, finances, and the fact that right now, Ninja Man and I are living in two different cities until his retirement is a reality.

But tonight it’s different.

I’m excited.

I didn’t know I was excited until I had spent maybe an hour lying there, wondering why I couldn’t sleep. I tossed. I turned. I prayed for people. I thought about reading, but Ninja Man was snoring beside me and the light might wake him.

I finally slipped out and, followed by the dog who never leaves my side, I quietly closed the bedroom door and walked into the kitchen.

That’s it.

My kitchen was becoming familiar.

There was the salt and pepper shakers I’ve had for years, right by the stove where they belong. Close by, my cooking utensils filled a decorative jar. The dishwasher, full of favorite dishes, waited to be emptied.

There’s a lamp softly glowing in the living room. Ninja Man installed those energy efficient light bulbs in everything so the lamp can stay on for ages and barely click our meter. I love seeing its gentle light as it stands sentry in an otherwise dark room, illuminating a small collection of photos of Ninja Man and me.

Until recently, this “new” home has been sparsely furnished with items we have been given or had to purchase. Until yesterday I’ve had disposable cups and paper plates. Even the sofa, love seat and recliner are some we purchased from a yard sale.

All of this because everything we own has been in storage. Most of it still is.

I’m not nearly as materialistic as this may read, but I do enjoy some of the familiar things that have made our house a home for many years.

This has been an expensive and exhausting time in our lives and it isn’t over yet. We really can’t afford the huge moving van so almost every weekend Ninja Man arrives in his pickup truck, loaded with as much as he could haul from one of our storage units. We will do it this way until we get it down to U-Haul size. Meanwhile, he has been awesome by bringing as much of my crafting and sewing supplies as possible, and my studio is coming together really well. But the stuff he brought this week was special.

There was a box marked “favorite everyday dishes” and yes, they are. Another held daily silverware, something I’ve missed quite a lot. Others held my mixing bowls, a toaster oven, dish towels and many things I “need” in my kitchen. I unloaded several of these boxes and filled the dishwasher. It was running late into the evening.

It wasn’t anxiousness or worry this time. I couldn’t sleep because I’m so happy my house is becoming our home. It’s almost like Christmas, and Ninja Man has to many more trips to make before everything finds its way here.

But for now I’ll enjoy what we have. Oh, and dream about the fact that the Emotional Baggage Room will have a floor by the time Ninja Man leaves on Sunday! This is huge, y’all. It’s a game changer. More on that later!

Y’all be blessed, keep up the prayers for baby Wren, and know I appreciate each of you!

Kathy Bo

 

 

Wash day = every day

If cottons and polyester blends could ever get confused, my laundry would be the first in line.

For the last 12 months, I’ve washed clothes in the weirdest places, with only ONE pleasant experience.

Y’all. I’m not a high maintenance girl. Really. I’m not. My laundry consists of t-shirts and leggings (yes, I’m 58 years old and I wear them. I am sure it’s a gift from the former me who HAD to wear panty hose in the summer in the 1970’s. WHO would refuse such a gift? Not me!)

Other clothing in my laundry are chemo week gear. Let me tell you about that.

Our grandLittle Wren was diagnosed with neuroblastoma in February 2016 at the age of 16 months. In order to help support our daughter and her family, my husband and I went into a phase of life that meant many changes.

We rented out our home, stored ALL THE THINGS and lived in our RV, 3 hours away from daughter, until Six Little Acres, which is just minutes from daughter, was livable.

Believe it or not, I kept that part right there pretty simple.

For more than a year, I traveled from the RV to daughter, picked her and baby up, and off we went to Atlanta for treatment.

We did this every 14 days.

Let me say now that our grandLittle is doing so much better! She still needs prayer and there’s more treatment ahead, but we believe the worst is behind us. Praise God!

So back to the laundry. I was doing laundry at the Ronald McDonald House. Now that really was the best experience of all the laundryness that I had to do. But we didn’t always get a place at the Ronald McDonald House. Sometimes it was an outdoor washer and dryer in a downtown Atlanta motel and it was very creepy and scary. Sometimes it was the camp ground and other public laundromats. Either way, where ever we went it was easily $12-$30 just to do laundry. I had to get my clothing down to a minimum. I needed low maintenance clothes.

Changing my look was all very appropriate, considering the fact that in no time, I had become a hot mess. My long brown (colored) hair had several inches of grey roots. All that long hair was piled on top of my head because the heat coming off of my body was enough to make me break out into a sweat for no reason whatsoever. I was miserable.

Ain’t nobody got time for that. The hair got cut and not kidding, this is me:
Short, grey hair DON’T CARE. And that’s not all: There’s been NO makeup for over a year. I wore it twice and cried it off both times.

Baby cancer will do that to you.

Ok, so very soon into this experience, I realized my clothes were not sufficient for doing things such as helping a wee one battle cancer. I needed things that did not snap or buckle or zip. Pretty much what I needed was pull ’em up, pull ’em over, and GO. And I needed big shirts to hang over everything just in case “stuff” started falling out because I didn’t get them pulled all the way up before the toddler was climbing on me to get out of there! She was always very eager to leave infusion-as we all were. I carried her most of the time and I was happy to do so.

It was during this time there was no room in my life for make up, bracelets, dangling earrings, necklaces, fancy purses or dressy, trendy shoes.

Nope no holes barred. I was going to be as stealth as possible, zipping in and out of that children’s hospital, toting baby and luggage (daughter did also) to hotels for the week, and trolling the streets of Atlanta, looking for places we could afford to eat. Hot mess. Hot, hot mess.

Well, I found the perfect ensemble for such a task as this. With plenty of tunics, leggings and a hipster type purse that hung over my shoulder and landed on the opposite hip, it was all I needed and all I really could manage.

And as of last Thursday (yes, I know I blogged about them already, but it’s THAT important, y’all!) I have my washer and dryer, here, at Six Little Acres.

I have washed everything. Even my Stampin’ Up backpack, the absolute necessity for all those trips. It’s hanging up to dry now.

Ninja Man might be a little jealous because I’ve been hugging these dreamy machines all weekend. I’m trying to keep it classy, but just one kiss on the power button is all innocent, right?


Oh, and the laundry room is pretty small but it is just enough to do the job. I found that rack above at Hobby Lobby for 40% off. It’s the bombdiggity.

Well, that’s it. I’ll try to peel my lips off these dream machine (they DON’T even take quarters!) and report back soon on other things going on at Six Little Acres. I have more time now that I’m not heading to the laundromat every other day. #uppity.

Thanks for stopping by, and please follow us on Facebook! God bless.

Baby Wren is on FB also: Hope for Wren

Cure for dem laundry blues

My washer, dryer and I are finally reunited after a long, long year.

Our dirty laundry has been exposed.

I've washed at the campground and local laundry that is next to a beer joint. I've washed at the Ronald McDonald House when helping during my grandLittle's chemo.

I've carried laundry up and down metal stairs to use a washer and dryer outside a downtown Atlanta motel.

I've loaded my car with no help, got to the laundromat and with people standing at the door, no help holding it open. Same way going back.

But no more.

That whole thing of saving-quarters-till-they-weigh-as-much-as-the-laundry is OH-VER.

Ohhhh veerrrrr.
Here's what:
Ninja Man showed up with these dreamy appliances just this morning. I tried to help him unload, but that has never ever gone well. Just as I was about to lose it- y'all, I mean LOSE IT…. out daughter showed up.

She and her dad share a brain. No really. They do. They got that washer inside and here's who died: nobody.

Again with the dryer. Nobody died.

Partly because I completely left the area. I hid out in the restroom.

Anyway, here I am at Six Little Acres, listening to the swish and gurgle of my washing machine. I think I'm in love.

Permit me to burn this

So we passed inspection a few weeks ago (see previous post) but we had so much going on we didn't have time to celebrate.

Oh, we've talked about it. We've planned and planned.

Extensive planning.

All that planning ended up with this:

We planned to have a fire. In a pit.

And that's not all. We planned to burn the renovation permit that was stuck on our door for over a stinkin year.

A year, people.

This is more than a classic cardboard mini-poster thing with black marker and … wait for it… blue painter's tape. This, THIS thing meant we were not allowed to live here until we fulfilled the county requirements. And now we have.

And like the song says, tonight's the night. Oh yeah. It is.

And Ninja Man, creative as he is, added all kinds of memorabilia to the blaze. There were pieces of old siding, a 2X6 from the EBR (our 14 X 44 "porch" aka the "Emotional Baggage Room"), some window trim and assorted bits and pieces from all over the former house.

Through the magic of the interwebs, y'all can celebrate with us!

Here I am directing the process because I'm a control freak:
and here is Ninja Man being all brave with this fire. It's his fire, after all. He's SO ready to toss that thing in. Me too, but I was feeling a bit warmish. It's July. In Georgia. So there we go. It's a done deal. We are living here and and we've had the ceremonial roasting of the permit.

Life is good here at Six Little Acres. We are blessed. Now for getting our stuff here and start decorating and nesting.

Thanks for stopping by and Click here for our Facebook page and enjoy extra content!

God bless.
Kathy Bo